It has been so long since I have cooked lamb shanks – I’m not sure why!
There is something so satisfying about cooking a tough piece of meat and turning it into something super tender and melt-in-your-mouth.
This dish is just that… the tomatoes and spices produce a rich chunky sauce, and the chickpeas add some crunch.
Serve with cous cous and a simple side salad – and if there are any leftovers, it’s even better the next day.
Lamb shanks with chickpeas, tomatoes and thyme
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 4 lamb shanks
- 2 onions , chopped
- 3 cloves garlic
- 3 teaspoons cumin
- 1 teaspoon turmeric
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 2 strips lemon zest
- 2 bay leaves
- 4 large springs of thyme
- 1/2 cup red wine vinegar
- 400 ml whole canned tomatoes
- 8 tomatoes ,halved
- 500 ml (2 cups) stock
- 400 ml tin chickpeas ,drained
Pre-heat oven to 180 degrees C (350 degrees F). Add oil to a dutch oven (or heavy saucepan with lid) over medium-high heat and brown the lamb shanks. Set aside.
Add onion and fry until tender. Add garlic, cumin, turmeric, cinnamon, lemon zest, bay leaf and thyme. Cook or 1 minute.
Add red wine vinegar and scrape any brown bit from the bottom of the pan. Reduce by half.
Add fresh and canned tomatoes and stock. Bring up to a simmer. Return lamb, cover and cook in the oven for 2 hours.
Remove from the oven and add chickpeas, stir through and return to the oven for 30 minutes.
Serve with cous cous, mashed potato or crusty bread.
If only serving two people I would still use the same quantities but with just two lamb shanks. There will be enough of the sauce leftover to have a tasty meat free dish the following night.